BKs use Freedom of Information Act to expose whistleblowers

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BKs use Freedom of Information Act to expose whistleblowers

Post by news editor » 31 Jul 2008

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Jo Maguire, a senior case officer at the UK Charity Commission confirmed that the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University are attempting to use the Freedom of Information Act 2000 threatening to expose concerned whistleblowers.

The religious movement, established as a charity "to alleviate poverty" is currently being investigated by the UK Charity Commission for its use of the protected 'University' title when it is not a university after all.

BKWSU trustees, through their lawyers, have requested copies of all correspondence or complaints which led to the commission's investigation of their activities. Mrs Maguire informs this site that the commission has a duty to consider whether or not disclosure of the information requested is in the public interest.

BK evangelism in the UK started in 1971 but took off in earnest in 1974 when a relative of the founder, Janki Kripalani, arrived in North London with little more than her suitcases. The charity now has an income of over £2 million per year, leases a country mansion and owns a £1 million retreat in Worthing as part of a £16 million property portfolio.

The founding Brahma Kumari and unpaid chief administrator, who is not know to have ever held employment, increasingly enjoys business class flights during her extensive international air travel. She was reported by individuals involved in a second charity set up in her name, the Janki Foundation, to have an undisclosed personal income or bank account. Given her emphasis places on follower surrendering everything to the BKWSU organization, we use like to this opportunity and ask the BKWSU to account for and clarify this report.

From the publicly available accounts, registered with the British Charity Commission, apart from two years in which additional donations were sought from adherents to give as relief aid to Tsumani suffers in India (approximately £23,309 out of £2,116,864 was given in 2006), it is argued that there is no evidence the BKWSU has used donations to alleviate anyone else's poverty within the UK in the last 34 years; apart from its own. The charity, a millenarianist religion which has encouraged followers to believe in regular and numerous failed predictions of the End of the World, also benefited from £140,447 income from "investments", including a cash balance of £3,082,146 according to the latest accounts.

In May 2008, during a special fund raising campaign in which now global chief Janki Kripalani was directly involved with, chief BKWSU secretary Brother Nirwair wrote that, "Every task in Baba’s unlimited Yagya is done for the comfort and care of the Brahmin family". He added that the building of new residential accommodation at its Indian headquarters will be complete with elevators, air conditioning and hot bating water. "Everything has and will continue to be accomplished with the collective cooperation of the divine family."

Nirwair reminds followers of their Baba’s Shrimat: “Our life becomes worth a diamond by using all that we have in a worthwhile way”.
In India, 35% of the population lives on less than $1 per day and 80% on less than $2 per day. 700 million people have no access to toilets with proper waste disposal systems. Only 30 percent of India's 950 million people have bathrooms in their homes or easy access to public toilets and an estimated 700,000 Indians die each year from diarrhea.
Janki Kripalani is reported to be recovered from free surgery and medical treatments carried out at a hospital in India which ex-chairperson of the Janki Foundation, Dr Ray Bhatt, stated in a telephone call was established by followers' donations primarily for the movement's benefit.

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